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I spent 10 minutes with Sandy Carter, Vice President, Social Business and Collaboration Solutions Sales and Evangelism, IBM, to learn more about IBM’s participation in Social Media Week – a worldwide, week-long series of interconnected activities and conversations regarding emerging trends in social and mobile media across all major industries.
As part of the week-long event, Carter hosted a Social Business Agenda Coffee talk in New York on Wednesday where she discussed how organizations can apply social techniques to their businesses to gain competitive advantages. She was also available to sign her new book, Get Bold: Using Social Media to Create a New Type of Social Business.
Q: Why is participation at Social Media Week important to IBM?
A: Over the past year, we've witnessed a shift in "social." Social today is not just about leveraging public platforms like Facebook and Twitter, it's about embedding social into all parts of an organization, embedding it into the heart of workflow processes to increase collaboration, reach new markets, and ultimately drive business value. IBM's involvement in Social Media Week is a unique opportunity to educate those who are already social media believers to take the next step towards truly becoming social businesses. The speakers provided an amazing mix of business points of view as well as highlighting the technology. IBM is honored to be included as a thought leader in the mix.
Q: What about its significance to you personally?
A: I personally enjoyed my involvement because it provided me with an opportunity to bring social business to life and meet people who I network with online. My session in NYC, "Social Business Agenda Coffee," provided the audience with guidance around how to apply social techniques to their business to gain competitive advantages while offering best practices for creating a social business agenda. The group had great questions, and ideas, it was a wonderfully interactive discussion on social business.
Q: What is one tool for social media you could not live without, and why?
A: I am a big micro blogger. I leverage Twitter externally and IBM Connections internally. I couldn't live without [them]! It causes me to pause and focus on the most important thoughts in 140 characters. Mark Twain once said, "I made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter." I love micro blogging because the ideas are well thought out!
Q: How do you measure “success” in social media?
A: Success in social is about the impact on the business. In most cases that is about ROI. The McKinsey study drives home the point of strong ROI that comes from embedding social into business processes. For instance, on average adding social to the customer service process can increase your customer satisfaction by up to 18%.
Q: What is the one take-away you want attendees of your session at social media week to leave with?
A: Social is not just about the technology but about People and Relationships. Forming a relationship with your clients, business partners, and employees takes time, and therefore you as a company need to start now so that you are not left behind!
[Edited By Moderator]